Leaders’ Statement on a North American Climate, Clean Energy, and Environment Partnership

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, President Barack Obama, and President Enrique Peña Nieto share a common commitment to a competitive, low-carbon and sustainable North American economy and society. The Paris Agreement was a turning point for our planet, representing unprecedented accord on the urgent need to take action to combat climate change through innovation and deployment of low-carbon solutions. North America has the capacity, resources and the moral imperative to show strong leadership building on the Paris Agreement and promoting its early entry into force. We recognize that our highly integrated economies and energy systems afford a tremendous opportunity to harness growth in our continuing transition to a clean energy economy.  Our actions to align climate and energy policies will protect human health and help level the playing field for our businesses, households, and workers.  In recognition of our close ties and shared vision, we commit today to an ambitious and enduring North American Climate, Clean Energy, and Environment Partnership that sets us firmly on the path to a more sustainable future.

Advancing Clean and Secure Power

We announce a historic goal for North America to strive to achieve 50 percent clean power generation by 2025. We will accomplish this goal through clean energy development and deployment, clean energy innovation and energy efficiency. Building from ongoing efforts by our respective energy ministers through the North American Energy Ministerial Memorandum Concerning Climate Change and Energy Collaboration, a range of initiatives will support this goal, including:

  • Scaling up clean energy through aggressive domestic initiatives and policies, including Mexico’s Energy Transition Law and new Clean Energy Certificates, the U.S. Clean Power Plan and five-year extension of production and investment tax credits, and Canada’s actions to further scale up renewables, including hydro.
  • Collaborating on cross-border transmission projects, including for renewable energy.  At least six transmission lines currently proposed or in permitting review, such as the Great Northern Transmission Line, the New England Clean Power Link, and the Nogales Interconnection, would add approximately 5,000 megawatts (MW) of new cross-border transmission capacity.
  • Conducting a joint study on the opportunities and impacts of adding more renewables to the power grid on a North American basis.
  • Enhancing trilateral collaboration on greening of government initiatives including the purchase of more efficient products, cleaner power, and clean vehicles.
  • Strengthening and aligning efficiency standards across all three countries, facilitating the seamless movement of products, reducing pollution, and cutting costs for consumers. We commit to promote industrial and commercial efficiency through the voluntary ISO 50001 energy performance standard and to align a total of ten energy efficiency standards or test procedures for equipment by the end of 2019.
  • Building on North American leadership in international forums such as Mission Innovation to accelerate clean energy innovation, our energy researchers will identify joint research and demonstration initiatives to advance clean technologies in priority areas such as: electricity grids and energy storage; reducing methane emissions; carbon capture, utilization and storage; and advanced heating and cooling, including energy efficiency in buildings.

Together, we estimate that the development of current and future projects and policies to achieve this goal will create thousands of clean jobs and support of our vision for a clean growth economy.

The three countries will continue to strengthen the North American Cooperation on Energy Information platform, by including additional geospatial information relating to cross-border infrastructure and renewable energy resources.  We also commit to deepened electric reliability cooperation to strengthen the security and resilience of an increasingly integrated North American electricity grid.

Driving Down Short-Lived Climate Pollutants

Short-lived climate pollutants such as methane, black carbon, and hydrofluorocarbons are up to thousands of times more potent than carbon dioxide. Common sense actions to reduce these pollutants will deliver significant climate and health benefits in the near term and into the future, supporting our goal to limit global warming this century.

Today, Mexico will join Canada and the United States in committing to reduce their methane emissions from the oil and gas sector – the world’s largest methane source – 40% to 45% by 2025, towards achieving the greenhouse gas targets in our nationally determined contributions. To achieve this goal, the three countries commit to develop and implement federal regulations to reduce emissions from existing and new sources in the oil and gas sector as soon as possible.  We also commit to develop and implement national methane reduction strategies for key sectors such as oil and gas, agriculture, and waste management, including food waste.

Finally, we pledge to continue collaborating with one another and with international partners as we commit to significant national actions to reduce black carbon emissions in North America, and promote alternatives to highly polluting hydrofluorocarbons.

Promoting Clean and Efficient Transportation

We recognize that fully realizing the promise of an integrated North American transportation network will require joint action that will create clean jobs while reducing energy consumption, greenhouse gases, and air pollution.  Today, we commit to:

  • Accelerating deployment of clean vehicles in government fleets;
  • Working collaboratively with industry to encourage the adoption of clean vehicles by identifying initiatives to support consumer choice;
  • Encouraging public and private infrastructure investments to establish North American refuelling corridors for clean vehicles;
  • Working to align applicable regulations, codes and standards where appropriate;
  • Fostering research, development, and demonstration activities for new clean technologies;
  • Convening industry leaders and other stakeholders by spring 2017 as part of a shared vision for a competitive and clean North American automotive sector.

Canada, the U.S., and Mexico commit to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from light- and heavy-duty vehicles by aligning fuel efficiency and/or GHG emission standards out to 2025 and 2027, respectively.  We further commit to reduce air pollutant emissions by aligning air pollutant emission standards for light- and heavy-duty vehicles and corresponding ultra low-sulphur fuel standards by 2018.  In addition, we will encourage greener freight transportation throughout North America by expanding the SmartWay program to Mexico.

We recognize the significant contributions of our respective automotive industries and urge them to continue playing a leadership role in the development and deployment of clean and connected vehicles, innovating toward a shared vision of a green transportation future.

We support the adoption by all countries in 2016 of the market-based measure proposed through the International Civil Aviation Organization to allow for carbon-neutral growth from international civil aviation from 2020 onwards and will join the first phase of the measure adopted.

We are committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions from maritime shipping and will continue to work together and through the International Maritime Organization to support implementation of a North American Emission Control Area that includes Mexico.

Protecting Nature and Advancing Science

The mainstreaming of conservation and sustainable biodiversity is a key component of sustainable development. Canada and the U.S. congratulate Mexico on its commitment to host the 13th Conference of Parties to the Convention on Biodiversity under this theme. We will also work together to better integrate ocean observation systems, enhance early warning systems for natural disasters, and cooperate on marine protected areas.

We reaffirm our commitment to work collaboratively to achieve our long term goal of conserving North America’s Monarch migratory phenomena and to ensure that sufficient habitat is available to support the 2020 target for the eastern Monarch population.  Trilateral efforts to date have achieved significant successes across the range, including the restoration and enhancement of hundreds of thousands of acres of habitat.  We look forward to continued progress and action in the future, building on the population increase for eastern monarchs observed in 2015.

We commit to collaborating with Indigenous communities and leaders to incorporate traditional knowledge in decision-making, including in natural resource management, where appropriate, and in advancing our understanding of climate change and climate resilience. We also recognize the importance of a gender-responsive approach to climate action and sustainable development.

Showing Global Leadership in Addressing Climate Change

Canada, the U.S., and Mexico will work together to implement the historic Paris Agreement, supporting our goal to limit temperature rise this century to well below 2oC, and pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5oC. We reaffirm our commitment to join the Agreement this year, and call on all nations to support its entry into force in 2016. As we implement our respective Nationally-Determined Contributions, we will cooperate on climate mitigation and adaptation, focusing in particular on highly integrated sectors, shared ecosystems, human health and disaster risk-reduction efforts. We will work together and with international partners to support developing country partners in their mitigation and adaptation efforts. We will also support robust implementation of the Paris Agreement’s transparency and carbon markets-related provisions, and will develop mid-century, long-term low-greenhouse gas emissions development strategies this year.

Canada, the U.S., and Mexico affirm our commitment to adopt an ambitious and comprehensive Montreal Protocol hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) phase-down amendment in 2016, and to reduce use of HFCs, including through domestic actions. We call on all nations to support this goal.

We commit to phase out inefficient fossil fuel subsidies by 2025 and call on the other members of the G-20 to do the same.  We also urge the G-20 to make commitments to reduce methane emissions in the oil and gas sector and to improve the environmental performance of heavy-duty vehicles.

Canada, the U.S., and Mexico will promote universal energy access and work together to address the challenges of energy security and integration, clean energy investment, and regional energy cooperation in the Caribbean and Central America.

Canada, the U.S. and Mexico will align approaches to account for the social cost of carbon and other greenhouse gas emissions when assessing the benefits of emissions-reducing policy measures.

The Action Plan that supports this Joint Statement further elaborates the various activities that the three countries are undertaking to meet their commitments.